Employment and training: e-learning

Related tags Skill

There are so many rules and regulations to navigate in today's pub businesses that even training new staff in the basics can take up much of your...

There are so many rules and regulations to navigate in today's pub businesses that even training new staff in the basics can take up much of your valuable time.

E-learning can play a vital role in reducing the time you need to spend away from the coalface of your business by providing on-demand online training courses that take staff through everything they need to know. In light of this, The Publican has teamed up with national training provider CPL Training to bring you The Publican E-Learning programme.

This series of online courses give you and your staff a great overview of the legal requirements of running a pub as well as acting as due diligence. The courses are priced at between £30 and £35 and can be accessed here: www.cple-learning.co.uk

The Publican's editor Caroline Nodder says: "Finding the time in a busy pub to train up new members of your team - especially if you have to send them to an external centre for the day - can put pressure on your business. I hope this e-learning option, which can be accessed as and when it is needed, will be a more convenient and effective alternative to traditional training and at a price which offers value for money. All you need to get started is a computer with an internet connection!" 

Talking about a Revolution

So what can e-learning actually do in practical terms for your business?

One company that has already been using the system is the Revolution Vodka Bar chain, which has more than 1,800 staff across 60 sites. E-learning complements the core face-to-face training: it improves accessibility, flexibility and cost-effectiveness for a large, transient on-trade workforce. But historically the downside for the operating company has been that it can be hard to monitor, difficult to create meaningful reports and easy for the learner to cheat.

The CPL Training team were keen to get in on the e-learning act, but also determined to bring something new and exciting to the scene.

Going 3D

CPL director David Dasher commissioned a global team of expert code writers, graphic designers and 3D animators to produce a suite of more relevant and interactive courses that are in tune with today's gaming-literate generation. In trial and then in operation for five months across the Revolution chain, the new e-learning courses have already seen 432 registered users and completed courses so far.

Ioan Eyton-Jones, the brand standards manager for Revolution with responsibility for e-learning across the business, is keen to stress the advantages for the operator. He says: "CPL Training has developed the online courses hand-in-hand with us. Their system is assessed through our intranet and is linked directly to our HR and payroll functions. On-site training managers can monitor when the course was taken, how long it took them, how many attempts it took to pass the course and their percentage pass rate." 

A £12K saving

For the learners themselves, the experience is markedly improved too. Grainne Maguire and Claire McParland (both 19 years old) work in the Revolution Bar in St. Peter's Square in Liverpool to support themselves through their degrees in Business Studies. Both agree that the content in the e-learning courses is more interesting and easier to pick up through the animations and graphics. The continuous testing throughout the modules highlights learnings and underpins the face-to-face training they receive.

Grainne says: "Health and safety and food safety are dry subjects but I found both courses really instructive and engaging. I've noticed other members of the team have picked up new practices too, like bending at the knees to pick up crates in the cellar. I can see this method of training becoming more and more useful."

Ioan says he has already seen a reduction of around £12k in his training costs this year.  

Meanwhile, David Dasher and his team of nine designers and programmers are brimming with new ideas. Dasher says: "We can put the learner into any virtual situation that they have to work through - just like real life. We're only in the starting blocks in terms of potential, but we're already running a different race to everyone else."

"Jobs in licensed retail are highly skilled. We all know that it's not just about pulling pints and chatting to customers - the popular view of our national press! Jobs in this sector require knowledge on food hygiene, fire safety, health and safety, underage sales prevention, drugs awareness, customer service and drinks service, and much more besides! While many get along with informal, on-the-job training, qualifications in all of these areas are becoming essential, and in many cases, mandatory.

"Despite the burden that this places on small businesses, qualifications validate the skills people already have and also fill in the gaps. Even more importantly, they offer recognition and provide motivation to employees. Once someone is skilled and qualified the evidence is that they stay longer and perform better for customers. This is essential if we are to develop a customer service culture in our sector.

"We're delighted to be involved in this e-learning partnership with The Publican. The online, e-learning courses we've developed over the past year are innovative, informative, engaging and light years ahead of anything else out there. While some training will always be done face-to-face, e-learning complements face-to-face training and helps break down barriers to learning through improving accessibility, flexibility and cost-effectiveness.

"The courses are ideal for new staff, or experienced ones, or for smaller independents who cannot always afford to send staff on face-to-face courses. It's really worth making the modest investment for your business and your staff.

"The regulatory burden on pubs and bars is growing all the time. For example, changes to legislation on fire safety and the age-verification requirements, in respect of young customers, all require training in order for legal compliance to be accomplished. Training also demonstrates due diligence - that you as an operator have high standards and take customer safety and responsible alcohol retailing seriously. That's where e-learning comes into its own. Gone are the days when you had to wait weeks for a local college to hold a course and then pay your staff to attend. These learner-friendly, cost-effective e-learning courses can be done at the learner's convenience, at work or at home - all that's required is an internet connection."

For more information about taking any other CPL courses or bespoke solutions please go to:

Visit: www.cple-learning.co.uk​ or call 0151 650 6910.

Benefits of The Publican E-Learning

• It breaks down barriers to learning because the courses can be undertaken by anyone with internet access 24/7

• It obviates the need for a group of learners to be gathered together at a given time and place for face-to-face training

• Learning can take place at the learner's or employer's convenience in or out of work time

• The courses are engaging, interactive and learner-centred, employing the printed word, voiceovers (male or female), video-clips, animations and progress tests to reinforce learning, thus all learning styles can be accommodated

• e-learning is a cost-effective alternative to face-to-face training

• All our e-learning courses are pitched at Level 2, which means that they are about delivering underpinning knowledge necessary for carrying out a particular job role.

Courses available

Food Safety Level 2
The Food Safety course has been developed to enable any person who works with food to ensure that the food they produce or handle is safe for customers to eat. By completing this course you will not only learn the basic princi

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